How did you two meet?
Dan – We met at work. I moved to the same division as Eve in the September as her boss. At the work Las Vegas-themed Christmas party in mid-December, Eve approached me and asked whether I’d like to get “married” by Elvis at the fake chapel. I’d fancied her for ages and had the perfect amount of beer inside me to overcome any feelings of self-consiciousness or nerves and so said yes. We left the party in the same taxi but went back to our own homes. The next day at work, because I was her boss, I was worried that it might be an awkward situation so didn’t pursue. It took more blatant hints from Eve until I finally called her to ask for a date.
Eve – I’ve learned that English men are a bit “slow” to make the move towards a girl. Dan wasn’t different and to make sure I made very clear to him that I was interested (after all he mentioned above), I sent him an invitation on LinkedIn (couldn’t find him on Facebook!). Only after this, did he finally understand my clear message that I was into him and he got the guts to call me! Thank God I didn’t wait for his own initiative.
What attracted you to each other? Was it the nationality, the fact that the other is “exotic” or just the appearance?
Dan – I was instantly attracted to her looks but also to Eve’s energy and sense of fun. The fact she was Brazilian might have contributed to her energy and buzz, and certainly contributed to her looks! So it didn’t consciously influence my decision but it was a plus point when telling mates about it in the pub…
Eve – I like English men, so that was a plus for Dan, but he also smelled sooooooo nice! Every time he approached me at work (even before the party) I felt butterflies in my stomach. He is tall and has beautiful blue eyes and a lovely smile. That attracted me visually to him. After I got to know him better, his hilarious sense of humor, caring and sweet behavior completed the package!
Did your friend’s influence helped you to pursue the relationship?
Dan – Yes. After the Christmas party mates in the pub helped convince me to call her for a date.
Eve – No, I knew I liked him, plus only my friend and flatmate at the time knew about him, as we kept it secret from people from work.
What are the things that you like the most about each other’s differences based on the fact that he/she is from a different culture?
Dan – I like the Brazilian attitude to family and how she is so close to cousins, aunts, uncles etc, very different from my own family. I like the new food and the motivation to learn a new language. It’s taking longer than I thought though!
Eve – I like that he is reserved and yet, he has such a funny sense of humour! Very English! However, he is far from cold. In fact, when we weren’t living together, I thought he was based on his texts, which were very direct, not very romantic… but back at the beginning of the relationship he was always very sweet and romantic when we were together. After we moved in together, he just got finer and finer! I mean, when we are together, because he still sends dry texts, but I don’t mind anymore.
What did you find the hardest to adjust to each other? Did it have anything to do with the cultural difference?
Dan – The attitude to religion took a bit of adjusting to. In England it’s the nature to take the piss out of everything, even if we like it or believe it. Brazilians can take offence when you insult their religion even if you do it with piss-taking intentions!
Eve – I was already pretty immersed into English culture, so it was not a problem for me to adjust to him and his ways.
What food from the home country does your spouse cooks best?
Dan – So much! I’ve grown to love picanha, pão de queijo, rice and beans, beef stroganoff (never realised it was a Brazilian favourite!)
Eve – Dan has wowed me with his amazing Sunday roast and pancakes, besides of some very posh special dishes. Worth to say he garnishes the food much better than I do!
Is there any funny story about cultural differences about you two that you would like to share?
Eve – Not really… the only thing that spring to mind is that Dan is used to drinking larger at room temperature. When he went to Brazil, he was impressed with Brazilian’s obsession to serve the “coldest larger” in the city!
Dan – Not room temperature, cold but not freezing! I was amazed by how every bar advertised how cold their beer was, with big blocks of ice and absolutely no mention was made of the quality or price! All that mattered was whether it was minus 10 or minus 12.
What is the “advantage” of dating/marrying a foreigner?
Dan – You learn new stuff all the time about how your upbringing was different from theirs, much more than with someone from the same country.
– The exotic nature makes it interesting
– Cheap holidays abroad (to her home country)
– Mother in Law will be abroad (though she’s lovely – in case she reads this)
Eve – I prefer the English way of living and thinking so being with Dan just complements that fact why I love this country!
How did your family react?
Dan – They were delighted after meeting her. Before they met her, I know they had a slight concern that there might be visa issues.
Eve – They were a bit scared at first because they knew I had got hurt before so didn’t want me to rush into anything especially since they knew he was my boss! But after all the great things I said about Dan and they saw me very happy through Skype, they were very happy with my choice. Oh, they were extremely impressed when Dan asked for my dad’s permission (via Facebook message) for us to get married! After that, they were so happy with him that they were willing to give him my hand, my head, my knee… everything they could possibly give!
Dan – Picking up the phone to call her for a date was the best thing I have ever done.
Eve – Although I was scared at first of having a relationship with somebody from work (I thought I would get sick of Dan from seeing him day and night), I am glad I persisted because we are now happily married and I just can’t get enough of him!